Den (Udimu)

Den (Udimu) in Tour Egypt

DEN, THE 4TH KING OF EGYPT'S 1ST DYNASTY. While an early King, Den, who's name means "Horus Who Strikes" (Udimu), is perhaps better attested than some. We believe he served as the 4th King of Egypt's 1st Dynasty. He may have come to the throne at an early age, with his mother, Merneith, acting as regent. He left a number of labels and inscriptions on stone vases which cite the king, including events during his reign. We have found seals impressions and inscriptions in tombs 3035, 3036, 3038, 3504, 3506, 3507, X and a lower status tomb at Saqqara, from a tomb at Abu Rowash and of course, from King Den's own Tomb at Saqqara. His throne name has been identified as Semti which helps us identify him as a king in the Abydos King list named Hesepti. He is believed to have been the first king to adopt a nsw-bity (King of Upper and Lower Egypt) name, which was Khasty. According to Manetho, he had a reign of some 20 years. However, he may have celebrated a Sed-festival, which usually occurred in the 30 year of rule, and some Egyptologists believe he may have reigned for as long as 50 years. Though the reigns of Den's processor and successor seemed to have been troubled, the reign of Den was apparently a glorious and prosperous one. Yet beyond this prosperity, like Horus Djer before him, Den left behind an intellectual reputation. We believe that the spells found in the later funerary manual called the Book of the Dead was attributed to his time, as well as medical formulae that were preserved in New Kingdom papyri. Den Apparently limited the power of high officials which had previously been allowed to grow dangerously strong during the reign of his predecessor. Such centralization always seems to have been key to a successful royal reign. However, we believe he also pursued a policy of conciliation with northern Egypt, probably creating a post of "chancellor of the King of Lower Egypt:, filled by a man named Hemaka. Hemaka is a well known figure of this time who built an important tomb at Saqqara. The contents of this tomb provide us with our most comprehensive collection of 1st Dynasty funerary equipment. It is also from this tomb that we find possible evidence for Den's Sed-festival (along with a label found at Abydos, depicting the earliest known king wearing the double crown of Egypt). Soon, however, it appears that Den turned his focus to military affairs. An interesting ivory label found at Abydos that was inscribed for Den records, "The time of the smitting of the East". It shows Den in the classic pharaonic posture, with his mace raised above his head about to club a foreign chieftain. This seems to correlate with the "Smiting of the Troglodytes" recorded on the Palermo stone. We believe these campaigns included an incursion into the "Asiatic" (Palestine) territories, during his first year, where he bought back a harem of female prisoners. He also seems to have made a military expedition into the Sinai to deal with a (so called) Bedouin problem. Den's tomb, notably excavated by Petrie in 1900 after having earlier been excavated by Emile Amelineau, has been identified as Tomb T at Abydos. Significantly, this tomb was the first we know of to utilized a significant amounts of granite in its construction. This consists of slabs of red and black granite from Aswan that was used to pave the burial chamber. In many ways, the tomb was one of the most impressive so far built in Egypt, and certainly at Abydos, with a proper stairway and a massive burial chamber that was once roofed with wood, perhaps retrieved during his Eastern military campaign(s). The stairway, the first we find in an Egyptian tomb, was sealed with a wooden door, and just before the burial chamber was a portcullis barrier to block grave robbers. A small room to the south-west, with its own small stairway, may have been an early serdab, which was a chamber built to hold statues of the deceased. A German team who excavated the ruins (after a number of earlier excavations) revealed that grave goods or fragments included pots with seal impressions, stone vessels, inscribed labels and other carved objects in ivory and ebony, as well as inlays from boxes and furniture. A long side chamber probably held jars of wine. Near the tomb were found 136 subsidiary burials. However, one of his queens was probably buried at Giza, and her tomb is larger than that of her husband's. It also included graves of sacrificed servants around it, but unfortunately, her name is not know.

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Den in Wikipedia

Den (or Dewen) was the fourth Egyptian king of the First dynasty[2] or fifth if Narmer is included. He was the son of Queen Merneith.[3] Early Egyptian records mention battles against Bedouin tribes in the Sinai during his reign. He was the first[citation needed] to use the title King of the Two Lands, and the first depicted as wearing the double crowns (red and white). The floor of his tomb in Umm el-Qa'ab at Abydos is made of red and black granite, the first time in Egypt this hard stone was used as a building material.[4] During his long reign he established many of the patterns of court ritual and royalty used by later pharaohs and was held in high regard by his immediate successors. Family Den's wives were Seshemetka, Semat, Serethor and possibly Qaineit[6]; their names are found at Abydos. It is possible that Qaineit was brought back to Egypt as a captive by Den or that she was a daughter of a foreign ruler [7]. It is thought that Den and Seshemetka's son may have been Anedjib, Den's successor.[8] Length of reign According to a study of the Palermo Stone, Den had a reign of at least "32 complete or partial years."[9] He appears to have ascended the throne as a child, and the reign of his mother Merneith (possibly as pharaoh) was likely a regency until he was of age.[10] He lived long enough to have enjoyed a second Sed festival, suggesting a reign of at least 33 or 34 years.[11] Consequently his reign is the best attested from the period,[11] and activities of his reign are preserved in register L of Cairo Fragment 5 while his later years are recorded on register III of the Palermo Stone.[12] Developments and events during his reign Den is the first pharaoh to use the title nj-sw.t-bj.t meaning literally "he of the sedge and the bee" (and represented by equivalent hieroglyphic characters) which is figuratively translated as "King of the Two Lands", the sedge and the bee being the symbols for Upper and Lower Egypt.[13] Though the kingdom had been unified since the time of Narmer from the previous dynasty, it is thought that this new title represented a further development of the ideology of divine kingship.[11] There is extensive evidence that Den conducted several campaigns against the people bordering the north-eastern part of his kingdom. An ivory label from Abydos depicts Den "at the time of the smiting of the east" (thought to be Sinai), which may also be referred to on the Palermo Stone as an event labeled the "Smiting of the Troglodytes" which happened the second year of an unidentified king.[14] The Palermo Stone records at least two of his campaigns against frontier peoples, and over 70 examples of imported ware from the Palestinian region suggest sustained contact with this region over the course of his reign.[15] His Horus name Hor Den means "Horus who strikes."[16] and it may have been chosen to reflect his preoccupation with establishing the frontiers of his kingdom.[15] The Palermo Stone records other key events, including a census in the fourth year of his reign,[11] the dedication of ritual objects to various shrines and the running of the Apis bull in the twelfth year of his reign.[15] Images of the feline goddess Mafdet are prominent during his reign, which may mean that the goddess was seen as a protector of the royal family during this time.[15] There was significant growth in the wealth and importance of court officials during Den's time on the throne. The tomb of his chancellor Hemaka is larger than the king's own tomb, and for years was mistakenly thought as belonging to Den.[17] This tomb, located at Saqqara contained many grave goods from this era, including an inlaid gaming disk and the earliest surviving papyrus document.[18] The wealth of goods from this tomb as well as those of other officials from this time are thought to reflect the relative prosperity of Den's reign. Tomb Den was interred within a tomb ("Tomb T") in the Umm el- Qa'ab area of Abydos, which is associated with other first dynasty kings.[19] Tomb T is among the largest and most finely-built of the tombs in this area, and is the first to feature a staircase and a floor made of granite.[20] His was the first tomb to have a flight of stairs leading to it, those of earlier pharaohs being filled directly above from their roofs. It is possible that the tomb may have used as a storehouse for surplus produce during the king's lifetime, while also making it easier to add grave goods for later use in the afterlife by Den.[21] Tomb T is also the first tomb to include architectural elements made of stone rather than mud-brick.[22] In the original layout for the tomb, a wooden door was located about half-way up the staircase, and a portcullis placed in front of the burial chamber, designed to keep out tomb robbers.[23] The floor of the tomb was paved in red and black granite from Aswan, the first architectural use of such hard stone on a large scale. Twenty labels made of ivory and ebony were found in his tomb, 18 of them found by Flinders Petrie in the spoil heaps left by the less systematic archaeologist Émile Amélineau[24] Among these labels are the earliest- known depictions of a pharaoh wearing the double-crown of Egypt, as well as running between ritual stele as part of the Sed festival.[25] Tomb T is surrounded by the burials of 136 men and women[26] who were buried at the same time as the king. Thought to be the king's retainers, an examination of some of the skeletons suggests they were strangled, making this an example of human sacrifice that was common with the pharaohs of this dynasty, but which seems to have ceased by its conclusion, with shabtis taking the place of actual people to aid the pharaohs with the work expected of them in the afterlife.[27] - Wikipedia

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